Having a classic car appraised can be a long and complicated process. In order to do his job well, the appraiser will look at a lot of things like 1) the condition of the car 2) if the numbers match and 3) if the paint is the original color. This is all necessary to get a correct value of the car.
The appraiser will base your car’s condition on a scale like this: 1= Needs Restoration, 2= medium, 3= Good, 4= Excellent. This is the first thing the appraiser will do. Then he/she will go in to the numbers of the car.
When the appraiser looks at the numbers, they will look for things that don’t belong on the car, and make sure that everything that does belong on the car is there. They will decode the VIN tag, RPO code, the engine block casting number, transmission tags, rear end tags, and the like.
They will look at how rare the car that you own is. Obviously the more rare the car is, the more it’s worth. For instance, a Zl1 Corvette is worth a lot more than a standard corvette because there were only two of them ever made.
If the appraiser is good, you’ll know everything about your car when the appraising is complete. You’ll know how rare it is, if it has all the factory options on it that were installed by the factory, and you’ll know if it’s the right color and if it has the right engine.
You should learn a wealth of information about your car if you get an appraisal done on it. These people spend their entire life learning about classic cars, and antique cars. If you find a reputable appraiser, you should get a good appraisal on the value of your car.
At some point in time most people want to know how much their cars are worth rather they plan to sell them or not. People have a lot of curiosity about their classic cars, or antique cars. They want to know if it has what it’s supposed to have, is it the correct color and is it worth what I paid for it?
Let me explain the condition scale a bit more, I’ll add a bullet list below.
1= Needs Restoration: This kind of says it all. The car is in very poor condition, probably not even safe to drive.
2= Medium: This is just a step above Needs Restoration, but probably a safe car to drive, in need of mechanical or body work to make it a good car
3= Good: Good condition would be a good daily driver, with maybe minor scratches in the paint, or a door ding or tow, but not much more than that, it would also have all of the factory options that were installed on it from the factory, I.E the correct engine, transmission, rear end, interior, and paint color
4= Excellent: This should pretty much explain itself, but I’ll add a short explanation of it. This would be a car that has everything that it came with from the factory. The car has no scratches, dents, or dings. It has the correct paint color, interior, and is not in need of any work. It is just the way it came from the factory.
Like any other profession this one has it’s bad apples. Make sure that the appraiser that you choose is reputable and certified. This will go a long way in telling you what kind of a person that you’re dealing with. Make sure that they have been appraising for a while. You will want to check out the Chamber of Commerce in your area for information about the appraiser that you want to use. Check the BBB, and last but most certainly not least, check word of mouth and ask the appraiser for references.